The life of a 53-year-old roofer who died after dropping 40 feet to the ground could have been saved if his employer had provided proper fall protection, the OSHA has found.

The agency cited R&B Contractors LLC of Shandon for one willful, 11 serious and three other-than-serious safety citations on Feb. 9, after the agency's investigation into the man's death at a commercial building site in Cincinnati on Aug. 10, 2015.

"This has to stop"

"Four of 10 fatalities in the construction industry in 2014* were the result of a deadly fall," said Ken Montgomery, OSHA's area director in Cincinnati. "Falls are a leading cause of death for construction workers and can be prevented with proper fall protection. Yet another worker has died needlessly because his employer failed to protect his safety. This has to stop."

OSHA investigators found the worker was installing a new commercial roof when he fell. No guardrails, safety nets or personal fall prevention devices were in place at the time. In addition, OSHA determined R&B failed to:

  • Train workers about fall hazards.
  • Develop a safety and health program.
  • Designate a safety monitor.
  • Train powered industrial vehicle operators.
  • Record injuries and illnesses.

R&B faces proposed penalties of $116,900. View citations here*.

OSHA's Stop Falls campaign

As the construction industry continues to grow, falls continue to be the leading cause of death. Source:

To inform construction employers and workers, OSHA offers a Stop Falls online resource with detailed information in English and Spanish on fall protection standards. The site provides fact sheets, posters and videos on various fall hazards and appropriate preventive measures. OSHA requires employers to provide an effective form of fall protection when workers perform construction activities 6 feet or more above the next lower level.

The agency's ongoing Fall Prevention Campaign was developed in partnership with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and NIOSH's National Occupational Research Agenda program. Begun in 2012, the campaign provides employers with lifesaving information and educational materials on how to prevent falls, provide the right equipment for workers and train employees to use gear properly.